WaPo: One Day, Four Departure Memos

Reporters at WaPo must have suffered whiplash yesterday from the flurry of “Staff Announcements” they received in their inboxes.

Management announced the departures of four employees.

1. Nancy Kerr is leaving WaPo for USA Today. She’ll be the new editor of Your Life feature as well as lead a team that produces stories on parenting, beauty and relationships. Kerry joined WaPo in 2004. No mention of  a goodbye party.

2. Nathaniel Vaughn Kelso, who handles cartography, is leaving for Stamen Design in San Fran. He arrived to WaPo in 2005. Noteworthy: “Nathaniel will be sorely missed, both for his work and for his cheerful good humor, not to mention his willingness to work until 3 am the night before an election. His last day is May 9, and we plan to have a farewell gathering on May 11 to send him off.” Also from the memo: “His departure leaves an opening at the junction of cartography and coding. Consider the position posted.”

3. Shankar Vedantam is leaving WaPo to become a science correspondent at NPR. In the memo they plugged his book, The Hidden Brain: How Our Unconscious Minds Elect Presidents, Control Markets, Wage Wars and Save Our Lives, and another publication, saying the New York Times called his book “entertaining romp through covert influences on human behavior.” Noteworthy: “Beyond his obvious talents as a journalist, Shankar will be greatly missed as a thoughtful and generous colleague. His presence enhanced our newsroom, and his easy demeanor and intelligent take on events made even a passing conversation with him something to savor.” No mention of goodbye party.

4. National Editor Wes Kosova is leaving WaPo to return to magazines in a senior position at Business Week. Noteworthy: “With a passion for web journalism, Wes brought new energy to the Post’s online political report and pushed us to innovate and step up our efforts. Even during long nights on the desk, Wes’s unfailing collegiality and comedic talents bolstered our spirits.” That said, the memo says they plan to “move quickly” on filling his position, which is unusual for WaPo. No mention of goodbye party.

Journos 1, 3 and 4 may want to crash Nathaniel Vaughn Kelso’s goodbye soiree. If we get the details we’ll spill them.